Annual Christmas Bird Count and Open House Mark the Season at Wind Cave National Park

black backed woodpecker close
Black-backed woodpecker

NPS Photo by Mike Laycock

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News Release Date: December 1, 2010

Contact: Tom Farrell, 605-745-1130


WIND CAVE NATIONAL PARK, S.D. – Holiday events at Wind Cave National Park begin with the annual Christmas Bird Count on Sunday, December 12, followed by the park's holiday open house on Wednesday, December 15, 2010.

The park's fifteenth annual Christmas Bird Count is patterned after the National Audubon Society's effort to document trends in wintering birdlife throughout the United States. The count area will include all of Wind Cave National Park and areas of the Black Hills National Forest and Custer State Park.

People wishing to participate should meet at the park visitor center at 8 a.m. Participants are asked to dress warmly, bring a lunch, field guides and binoculars, something to share for dinner and a place setting. Participants will return to the park's VIP Center at 4:15 p.m. to compile results and share in a potluck dinner. For more information, contact Barb Muenchau or Dan Roddy at 745-4600.

The open house on December 15 will run from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the visitor center. Light refreshments will be served, and students from the Hot Springs' third grade will sing carols at 1 p.m. The visitor center Christmas tree will be decorated by the students.

"Our open house is a fun way to celebrate the season and visit with park staff," said superintendent Vidal Davila. "We look forward to the opportunity to visit with our neighbors, and we wish people in our surrounding communities a happy and safe holiday season."

The public will be able to view park exhibits and browse through the visitor center's bookstore which is operated by the Black Hills Parks and Forests Association. Cave tours will also be offered, as they are throughout the winter, at 10 a.m., 1 p.m., and 3 p.m.

The visitor center and cave will be closed on Christmas and New Year's Day to allow staff to celebrate the holidays with their families. Throughout the remainder of the winter, the visitor center will be open daily from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Last updated: April 10, 2015

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26611 US Highway 385
Hot Springs, SD 57747


(605) 745-4600

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